With Gary Payton heading to the Hall of Fame this weekend, the internet has been buzzing about the Glove and his opinions (Stockton being tougher to guard than Jordan) and reflecting about his game and the trash talking that came with it. And when you talk about the Glove in Seattle you have to talk about the hand that fit in the glove and that hand was Shawn Kemp aka The Reign Man.
The duo became the most exciting alley-ooping threat in the league during the 90s and The NBA wanted to pay homage to the dynamic duo by releasing a “Top 10 Alley-Oops: Gary Payton to Shawn Kemp” video. My beef with the video is it seems it was made by somebody that was looking through archives and judging off the visuals of the highlight as opposed to remembering Kemp and finding the clips that best represented GP, Kemp and the Sonics in the 90s.
So here’s a couple of my alternate picks that belong on this list.
“It’s a jamfest baby and we love it!” We did and we all loved Kevin Calabro aka The voice of the Supersonics. He didn’t move with the team when they became the Thunder but his voice lives on in Kemp videos and this game calling on this game might have been my favorite.
If any oop was a milk carton dunk it would be this 1 hand oop (3rd play in the video above) over Alonzo Mourning. Kemp was called for a tech for his celebration and after the Sonics lost, George Karl was fined for saying the refs “ought to be shot!”
Nobody knew how to celebrate like Kemp and after this “1 hand mojo” vs the Bucks he made a something smells really funky and nasty expression that warrants a few moves up any list.
Speaking of celebrations and oops. I wish GP would have thrown the following oop (1:00 mark) because his 1 hand swing on the rim while grabbing his nuts post oop celebration caused a little controversy in the early 90s. David Stern made him stop doing it but Kemp brought it back for a Dream Team 2 game.
There’s a GP to Kemp connection against an early Penny to Shaq team that I can’t find so in it’s place I’ll show this GP to Kemp connection against Shaq’s replacement in Orlando.
If you start the next video at the 2:15 mark you will see a few plays that made the top 10 list and a few that could have easily have been there but at the 2:37 mark there’s a 1 hand oop that was dunked with so much power that it looked like it scared Allan Houston when the ball went through the net and bounced hard off the ground.
I can’t wait to see GP inducted into the Hall of Fame this Sunday so in the meantime I’m just going to dig through some more VHS tapes for more GP/Kemp gems since it seems the NBA wasn’t willing to search very hard.